But proper oversight and directed appropriate regulation will improve public schools.
I’m 62 and have had some years teaching in the public schools; my degrees are in science education and educational sociology.
Concern for education standards began to surface in the late 60’s and early 70’s. The proposed solution over the entirety of those four decades is exactly what you say; and yes, oversight and regulation have consistently been increased over that period of time.
Additional oversight and regulation has led to no significant improvement in normalized outcomes over that period. In fact, the only thing additional oversight and regulation has done is deskill the teacher, leading to lower job satisfaction, and an increase in the rate of young teachers leaving the profession within their first five years of employment.
There is a saying about doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. I trust you know what it is. :-)
Allowing charters schools to siphon off money from them will only weaken the public schools to be able to provide the education experience they need and deserve.
I believe this to be a false choice.
But first, I must say: The state should have no right to fiscally coerce a parent into one specific school. It is anti-democratic, and is not a model that’s followed in Canada nor most of Europe, where most countries have provided school choice for a long time.
Having pointed that out, I argue the opposite. If certain students are culled out because they choose privates or charters, that give teachers the opportunity to focus in on the ones that remain. As much as I enjoyed my high performers in my last classroom, I would have been happy to have lost them to a charter so I could give the struggling students more time, especially the ESL students.
Further, using money as an argument against charters is weak tea. Schools are funded by broadbased property taxes, and it is generally not difficult for districts to go back and get another few dollars per $100 valuation if they can justify the need. It happens quite easily even here in Texas, where people are about as anti-tax as you can get.
Also, keep in mind: it would take a LOT of students, far more than are currently interested in charters in districts where multiple charter options are available (like mine) to have an severe budgetary impact. And if such an unusually high percentage of students were choosing charters, that would tell you something about what kind of teaching wasn’t happening at the neighborhood school.
I thank you for keeping it civil and about the youth we care greatly about!
Same to you. One one portion we may agree, however. I think charters for K-5 provide no value. At that age, regardless of socioeconomic class, the children are cute little bunnies; and if they don’t learn to read at grade level, the solution is not a charter, it’s making heads roll at the school that’s failing.
Sometime during the 6th year, adolescence creeps into the equation. This is a challenge where students seem to require multiple strategies, and the charter is an excellent way to provide those alternatives. The aformentioned Texas charters, which take those at-risk underpriviledged children and get them to college, tend to use the 11 month year 8–5 each day strategy, which seems to work….amazingly well.
Hope that helps.